The movement of fast-food workers demanding wages of at least $15 an hour made a spirited visit to Concord, New Hampshire this afternoon.
About 35 workers and allies chanted and marched down Loudon Road from Hazen Drive to East Side Drive and back again on the other side. The route took us past Dunkin Donuts, McDonalds, KFC, Burger King, Wendy’s, and other establishments that currently depend on low-wage workers.
The Granite State actually abolished its minimum wage in 2011, which means that the base pay for most workers is $7.25 an hour, the federal minimum. The base pay for tipped workers is even less. Attempts every year since then to restore the minimum wage and raise it have been unsuccessful, largely due to effective lobbying by trade associations of businesses that pay low wages.
“You can’t survive on $7.25. Live free or die!” was one of the chants.
The marchers went inside at KFC, where they chanted for several minutes before leaving voluntarily. At McDonalds we were locked out. Several members of the Concord Police Department met up with us at Burger King, where they explained the rules regarding trespass and disorderly conduct to labor organizers who no doubt were already familiar with the law.
Today’s demonstration was organized by SEIU Local 1984, the Granite State
Organizing Project, and the United Valley Interfaith Project.
GSOP and UVIP have been holding monthly “Fight for $15” protests in Concord, Manchester, Nashua, and West Lebanon, but typically with smaller groups and a less confrontational approach. The monthly actions generally take place on the 15th of the month.
For more information, contact
GSOP at 603-668-8250 or http://granitestateorganizing.org/
UVIP at 603-443-3682 or